Starting fresh herbs, tomatoes, and melons from seed can be rewarding and delicious. But how many times have you found that you have leftover seeds? And what can you do with them while they are still viable? Host a seed swap!
Seed swaps are a great way to share with family, friends, and neighbors. Rather than allowing all that potential deliciousness to lie fallow in your seed box or junk drawer, a seed swap allows everyone to grow a wider variety of plants without spending more money. And it’s a great excuse to get together and talk plants!
Seeds grown and produced in your neighborhood have the added benefit of being better suited to your microclimate than commercial seeds.
How many seeds are in a packet?
Seeds are sold by weight. Larger seeds, such as squash or beans, are heavier and take up more space, so you may only get 20 in a packet. But packets of the same size may contain 400 carrot or 500 lettuce seeds! I’m sure that none of us has the space or desire to grow 500 lettuce plants, and that’s where seed swaps come in.
What is a seed swap?
Seed swaps are casual get-togethers where everyone brings their excess seeds and a dish or beverage to share. These events can be large or small, a handful of friends, or a community event. Community events need more tables and supplies, but the basic steps are the same.
Seeds brought to share can stay in their original packets, making it easy for guests to copy planting instructions onto their envelopes. Or, to make things look more festive, place seeds in jars or other containers and lay the original packet alongside.
If your seed swap is a big event, you may want to create stations where guests can sort through various plant families or categories. Otherwise, relax and enjoy finding and learning about some new plant varieties with your guests!
When creating your guest list, you can add non-gardening friends, too. Who knows, you may spark their interest! And you may want your experienced gardening friends to bring seedlings and succulents to share.
Seed swap activities
If your event would benefit from activities, you can add stations for these seed swap extras:
Most seeds are only viable for a couple of years. Beyond that, results can be iffy. Put all your seeds to good use with a seed swap.
You can grow a surprising amount of food in your own yard. Ask me how!
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